General Practice Experience Pathway – Requirements for Fellowship


1. Purpose

1.1 The purpose of this policy is to describe the requirements for candidates on the General Practice Experience Pathway to be awarded Fellowship of the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners.

1.2 Context

Upon the award of Fellowship, the RACGP formally recognises that a medical practitioner is competent for unsupervised general practice anywhere in Australia. In the interest of upholding public health and safety, this policy ensures that candidates on the General Practice Experience Pathway have satisfied all educational, experience, assessment, professional and ethical, and administrative requirements prior to the awarding of Fellowship. In turn, this policy ensures that general practitioners who have attained Fellowship are of good repute.

2. Scope

2.1 This policy applies to candidates on the General Experience Pathway, including participants of the Practice Experience Program (PEP).

2.2 This policy is to be read in conjunction with the Fellowship Exam Attempts Policy, Fit and Proper Fellow Policy and Assessment of General Practice Experience Policy.

2.3 This policy replaces the previous General Practice Experience Pathway – Requirements for Fellowship Policy and will come into effect as of Monday 31st May 2021.

3. General principles

3.1 Assessment requirements

  1. Candidates must pass all RACGP Fellowship examinations in line with the Fellowship Exam Attempts Policy.

3.2 Professional and ethical requirements

The RACGP reserves the right to withhold awarding Fellowship to an applicant if the RACGP reasonably considers the applicant:

  1. Engages in conduct which would attract sanctions under Clause 27 of the RACGP’s Constitution;
  2. Is unsuitable to be awarded Fellowship as detailed in the Fit and Proper Fellow Policy; or
  3. Has restrictions, conditions, suspensions and/or undertakings on their current medical registration that prevent them from undertaking unsupervised general practice.

3.3 Administrative requirements

Candidates must:

  1. Hold current Australian medical registration from the date of commencing work in Australian general practice and throughout their candidature. Candidates must promptly disclose all details of any:
    1. restrictions, conditions, suspensions and/or undertakings on, or changes to their medical registration; and
    2. regulatory authority activity, whether in Australia or otherwise, that:
      1. has led or may lead to a restriction, condition, suspension and/or undertaking on medical registration
      2. has led to an adverse finding for the medical practitioner, or forms part of an ongoing investigation.
    3. candidates must disclose changes to their medical registration via email to education@racgp.org.au
  2. Be a financial RACGP member from the time of joining the General Practice Experience Pathway and throughout their candidature;
  3. Complete a basic life support (BLS) course that meets the requirements as detailed in the Basic Life Support and Advanced Life Support Guidance Document within the 12 months prior to applying for Fellowship, as per the Basic Life Support and Advanced Life Support Guidance Document;
  4. Complete an advanced life support (ALS) course within the four years prior to applying for Fellowship, as per the Basic Life Support and Advanced Life Support Guidance Document;
  5. Have five years’ full time equivalent (FTE) general practice experience including one year in comprehensive Australian general practice experience, assessed by the RACGP as per the Assessment of General Practice Experience Policy;
  6. Have seven years’ FTE postgraduate experience, assessed by the RACGP as per the Assessment of General Practice Experience Policy; and
  7. Apply for Fellowship within three years of successful completion of the RACGP Fellowship examinations, or within one year of completion of all pathway requirements (whichever is the lesser).

4. Changing Fellowship pathway

4.1 Candidates can only be enrolled in one Fellowship pathway at a time. If a candidate seeks to participate in a different Fellowship pathway, they must first resign their candidature in their current pathway and apply for entry into the alternative pathway. If a change in pathway is accepted, the candidate must then meet all of the requirements of the new pathway to be awarded Fellowship.

5. Reconsideration

If a candidate believes that the RACGP has made an incorrect decision regarding their attainment of, or eligibility for Fellowship, they may apply for reconsideration in line with the RACGP Reconsiderations and Appeals Policy.

  1. An application for reconsideration must be submitted to the RACGP within ten national office business days of the date of the original decision.

6. Amendment of this Policy

The CIC may, without the consent of the Board, make Minor Amendments to this policy at any time.

If the CIC makes Minor Amendments, he/she must advise the Board of those amendments as soon as practicable.

The Board may make amendments to this policy at any time.

7. Responsibilities

7.1 RACGP Board

Responsible for approval of policy and Major Amendments.

7.2 Censor-in-Chief

Give recommendations regarding the awarding of Fellowship to the RACGP Board on behalf of the Council of Censors. Responsible for Minor Amendments.

7.3 GPE candidates

Provide all relevant documentation and supporting evidence regarding their eligibility for Fellowship to the RACGP.

7.4 RACGP State Faculties/ Faculty Censors

Review and approve candidates applications for Fellowship.

8. Glossary

8.1 Advanced Life Support (ALS)

See the Basic Life Support and Advanced Life Support Guidance Document.

8.2 Applicant

A candidate on the General Practice Experience Pathway who has successfully met all requirements under this policy and is applying for Fellowship of the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (FRACGP).

8.3 Basic Life Support (BLS)

See the Basic Life Support and Advanced Life Support Guidance Document.

8.4 Candidate

A medical practitioner who has successfully met all entry requirements as outlined in the General Practice Experience Pathway Entry Policy, and has been accepted onto the General Practice Experience Pathway.

8.5 Comprehensive Australian general practice

  1. Continuity of care that is person centred, comprehensive and coordinated; focusing on the whole person, and all presenting symptoms
  2. Health promotion and illness prevention services that are based on patient need and the best available evidence
  3. The diagnosis, treatment and management of the full range of undifferentiated conditions in a diverse range of individuals, families and communities not limited by practice intention or business focus
  4. Community-based general practice undertaken in Australia. 

This is an abridged definition distilled from the Competency profile of the Australian general practitioner at the point of Fellowship.

8.6 Full time general practice experience

Comprises a 38-hour minimum working week, over a minimum of four days per week, of which a minimum of 27 hours must be in face-to-face, rostered, patient consultation time undertaking general practice activities. Work periods of less than three consecutive hours, or of less than one month in any one practice, will not be considered. Hours worked beyond this definition of full time will not be considered.

8.7 RACGP Fellowship examinations

The exams which, as determined by the RACGP, assess a candidate’s competency for unsupervised general practice anywhere in Australia. They include the:

  1. Applied Knowledge Test (AKT);
  2. Key Feature Problem (KFP); and
  3. Clinical Examination, which depending on the time of sitting, is the Objective Structured Clinical Exam (OSCE), Remote Clinical Exam (RCE) or Clinical Competency Exam (CCE).

9. Related Documents, Legislation and Policies

Compliance

Guidance

10. Policy Review and Currency

This policy will be reviewed every three years from the last approval date, or when there is a significant change in the intent of the policy. This policy remains valid and applicable notwithstanding if it is overdue for review.

Version History

Release Notice

Version

Date of effect

Amendment details

Amended by

2

31/05/2021

Moderate

Policy Advisor, Strategy and Development

Policy owner:

Board

Approved by:

CiC

Approved on:

25/05/2021

Next Review Due:

31/05/2024

 

 

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